Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Caught up in a Tangle!

I've been dealing with some painful back issues lately. As a way to escape from the pain without over medicating myself I thought to do a little drawing. Something I used to do in what seems like now a past life! Actually from about the age of 8 to 20. After I got pregnant and started my family it seems the drawing just got set on a back shelf and forgotten about.

So, when I first picked up a pen and paper I just sat and stared at the blank whiteness of it for a good 10 minutes. Nothing came. I guess I thought it would be like riding a bike and I would just sit down and art would spew forth from my fingers. LOL Not the case!

After 10 minutes I finally managed to draw a little made up cartoon character I used to draw. I've drawn him a 1000 times, so it took all of 60 seconds out of my day. Not what I was after. I was searching for something that would let me immerse myself in the pen and paper, let the creativity flow and help me escape the pain for awhile. Something other than my beads that I always turn to in times of need. Why no beads? Because at the moment I am stuck in a zone of needing to create for either classes or kits and my mental state of mind is not conducive to that. Trust me! I tried.

After dealing with the frustration of not having a single thought in my brain that I could draw, I remembered having seen a few beady friends talk about Zentangles. Basically, from what I knew, a way to doodle starting with a set of steps that would then allow you to experience the "zen" of drawing. Seemed silly to me...drawing was always zen-like for me. Why would I need to give it a name, or start in a certain sequence in order to get there? Why do I always have to question everything?

So, I googled and got 474,000 links! LOL Let's start at the first one! This took me to the
Zentangle.com website. These are the folks who coined this term and the sequence of events. They have a plethora of information, lots of additional links, instructions, patterns, etc. Looks like fun! So, I took a trip to the craft store for a sketch pad and some nice pens. They didn't have the pens suggested (Sakura Pigma Micron) and their sketch pads were all generic. But as I was walking thru the store I spotted some stiff paper cutouts in fun shapes like leaves and butterflies. Maybe I could just draw on one of those? I headed to my local art supply store, Riley Street, for the pens.

When I got home I was really anxious to get started. But in normal fashion for me, I tend to not follow the "rules" (actually they are just guidelines, but if they act like a rule I seem to run in the opposite direction). This is something that many times in life has gotten me in big trouble, and other times has allowed me the freedom to discover things I love. So...I don't fight it! LOL

Here is my first (finished) "zentangle" which isn't really a zentangle but more of doodling the zentangle fashion on paper.

I actually started doodling on this leaf shape first, but the butterfly shape was sitting out on my table and it kept screaming my name. So I set the leaf down, completed the butterfly and then returned to this leaf...my second "zentangle"

I promised myself that I would try to draw on un-shaped paper for the next one, trying to follow the guidelines. I got close! I didn't do the dots in the four corners thing, but I did draw in my sketch book for my third zentangle.

I am totally experiencing the zen-like state of mind I was searching for. It is a wonderful escape!

I am planning a long road trip with my sisters Kathy & Patti to start later this month. I can't wait to see what shapes I see while driving around the country that I can add to my drawings!

I also plan to blog about this journey, so if you'd like to follow along while I travel from Nashville, TN up to the northern most corners of the US and down to Florida, check back here often!

~ Beki


Tracy Stanley-Wired Arts said...

Fun stuff Beki! I have purchased several books and pens/pencils to get started, but so far haven't pulled the trigger. You are inspiring me to do so!

Beki said...

Do it, Tracy! It is such a nice escape...and inspiring for what I am "suppose" to be working on. I got some great beady ideas from the doodling! I can totally see it transitioning into wire and metal very easily!

NEDbeads said...

I did the same thing, Beki! I turned to the tangles when I couldn't get any inspiration from the beads and my depression was swamping me - and it really does help, doesn't it? (I am assuming it helped with trying to forget with the back pain because it helped me lift the depression...) I LOVE your tangled shapes, they are SO inspiring!!!!!

Cyn ~ The Wingedneedle said...

Love the 'tangles!! you are on a roll for sure and I will definitely be following your up coming journey(would love to be a dragonfly in that car). I 'tangled my ott-lite, just because I could!!

Amy's said...

you have no idea how amazing this thing what you did !!!
I absolutely love it !!

Pat Riesenburger said...

Love 'em, Beki! I have been hearing a lot about Zentangle recently and it was a treat to get a peek at this art form!

KatieLiz said...

I've been hearing about Zentangles and yours inspired me to go out and get a sketchbook, pens and pencils. Thanks (I think)!! ;)

Estelle Goodnight said...

Hi Beki -- I absolutely LOVE your tangles! They are AMAZING! I am a "CZT" -- a Certified Zentangle Teacher. I teach Zentangle at my store (Beads'N More) and the benefits derived from it are never-ending and ongoing. I'm so glad you discovered this wonderfully creative art form. It does the same thing beading does for me, except to a deeper degree -- and it's very portable. Instead of getting irritated while having to wait in the doctor's office, I just carry my pen and tiles with me and I tangle. Have a wonderful time on your trip. Namaste

Katie B said...

Beki -- are you coming ANYwhere near us?? Colleen and I would love to hug YOU !!